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How to Protect Your Cedar Siding Shingles

cedar siding shingle maintenance

To provide you with the look you’re after, red and white cedar siding shingles are available in both pre-finished and unfinished forms. While untreated cedar siding shingles offer an attractive weathered look, they are more prone to damage caused by weather, insects, and other conditions. To avoid this type of damage, an option for you is to pick cedar siding shingles that have been factory treated or sealed.

Treatments for cedar siding maintenance

Some cedar siding shingles are treated with bleaching oil, which is a treatment made with linseed oil and bleach crystals. Along with protecting your cedar shingles against decay and other coastal contamination, this treatment will also give them the weathered silvery gray look that many homeowners prefer. Bleaching oil also protects against the blackening of cedar siding shingles caused by mildew infestation and natural substances in the wood. You may need to recoat your cedar siding shingles with this bleaching oil to keep them in optimum condition.

If you like the natural cedar siding look, you can apply a clear coat solution to them. This clear coat solution will help prolong the life of the wood and will slow down the weathering process to help preserve the natural unfinished look of cedar.

Texture and absorption of cedar siding treatments

The texture of your chosen cedar siding will affect its absorption of whatever protective product you choose to apply. Smooth cedar siding shingles, while showing the grain patterns and color variations better than other textures, will absorb less finish and will require more maintenance in terms of re-coating the finishes. Other textures like rough and saw-textured, can absorb twice as much finish and need to be re-coated much less frequently than the smooth-textured variety.

Moisture maintenance for cedar shingles

Part of ensuring that your cedar siding shingles last lies in maintenance. Though it is a product that is placed on the exterior of your home, keep in mind that the interior conditions of your house may also affect the condition of your cedar siding shingles. Moisture from both interior and exterior sources is one of the biggest foes of cedar siding shingles. Humidity and other forms of moisture can penetrate through cracks and crevices in the walls of your home and reach the shingles installed outside. Measures to prevent moisture problems from inside your home include:

  • maintaining an interior humidity of around 40%
  • making sure that your attic is properly insulated and well ventilated to prevent any one spot from being too humid and thus risking moisture seepage through the shingles
  • installing heating wires to melt any ice that may have found its way under the shingles
  • checking the caulking around your home for possible leaks.

If these measures sound a bit too daunting to take on yourself, consider hiring a contractor to do them for you.

Have you taken measures before to protect your cedar siding shingles?

Click here to take a look at our online selection of sturdy wood siding. Discover the right look for your home.

(5) Comments

  1. We are installing white cedar shingles that have been pre dipped in and acrylic bleaching solution. Will we be able to stain these shingles with a color stan in the coming year or two?

    • BuildDirect Product Expert Team - Reply

      Hi Mark,

      Thank you for getting in touch! You should be able to stain the shingles after some time. You will need to do maintenance on the cedar shingles over time. I would double check with the manufacturer to be sure. Please let us know if you have any other questions!

  2. Pingback: Cedar Siding Shingles 1526 - Home Inspiration Ideas

  3. do we need to bleach first if the shaingels were pressure washed but not sealed after.
    The became black in some areas. What is the clear oil that we should use. Saw Flood comapzny has cedar sealer.

    • BuildDirect Product Expert Team - Reply

      Hello Maoz, thanks for your comment. Bleaching the shingles would not be necessary in this situation. There any many types of wood oil that you can use in your local hardware stores. The Cedar Bureau recommends you try a good fungicide/preservative.

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